TEN QUOTABLE QUOTES FROM PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA’S SPEECH AT THE AFRICAN UNION, 28 JULY 2015.

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1. “Africa and its people helped to shape America and allowed it to become the great nation that it is.”

2. “Dignity — that basic idea that by virtue of our common humanity, no matter where we come from, or what we look like, we are all born equal, touched by the grace of God. Every person has worth. Every person matters. Every person deserves to be treated with decency and respect”

3.”So many Africans have told me, we don’t want just aid, we want trade that fuels progress. We don’t want patrons, we want partners who help us build our own capacity to grow. We don’t want the indignity of dependence, we want to make our own choices and determine our own future.”

4.”Alongside new wealth, hundreds of millions of Africans still endure extreme poverty. Alongside high-tech hubs of innovation, many Africans are crowded into shantytowns without power or running water — a level of poverty that’s an assault on human dignity.”

5.”We need only to look at the Middle East and North Africa to see that large numbers of young people with no jobs and stifled voices can fuel instability and disorder. I suggest to you that the most urgent task facing Africa today and for decades ahead is to create opportunity for this next generation.”

6.”Nothing will unlock Africa’s economic potential more than ending the cancer of corruption.”

7. “But, ultimately, the most powerful antidote to the old ways of doing things is this new generation of African youth. History shows that the nations that do best are the ones that invest in the education of their people”

8.” I believe Africa’s progress will also depend on democracy, because Africans, like people everywhere, deserve the dignity of being in control of their own lives”

9. “Yet at this very moment, these same freedoms are denied to many Africans. And I have to proclaim, democracy is not just formal elections. When journalists are put behind bars for doing their jobs, or activists are threatened as governments crack down on civil society, then you may have democracy in name, but not in substance. And I’m convinced that nations cannot realize the full promise of independence until they fully protect the rights of their people.”

10. “When a leader tries to change the rules in the middle of the game just to stay in office, it risks instability and strife — as we’ve seen in Burundi. And this is often just a first step down a perilous path. And sometimes you’ll hear leaders say, well, I’m the only person who can hold this nation together. If that’s true, then that leader has failed to truly build their nation.”

Dr Theogene Rudasingwa

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